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Pitchley relishing Raiders cup test

PUBLISHED: 12:00 12 January 2018

JJ Pitchley attacks for London Raiders (pic John Scott)

JJ Pitchley attacks for London Raiders (pic John Scott)

Archant

London Raiders forward JJ Pitchley expects another hard weekend against Swindon Wildcats in the National League Cup.

Raiders travel to the Link Centre for the first leg of their quarter-final tie on Saturday (6.15pm) and host the return at Lee Valley on Sunday (5.30pm).

And they go into the double-header after seeing a five-match winning run ended by high-flying Peterborough in a 5-2 loss last weekend.

Former English Premier League side Swindon skated to a 7-2 win in the first meeting with Raiders at Lee Valley in October, but were made to work hard for a 3-2 success on home ice in November.

The 23-year-old Pitchley said: “It’s going to be another hard-fought weekend, but we have shown in previous games against big teams that we can compete.

“We just need to stick to our game plan of physical hockey and take our chances well and that will see us take the wins and advance to the semi-finals.”

Raiders made it five wins in a row in National League and cup matches when beating Cardiff 7-1 in Wales last Saturday, their first match of 2018.

Tom Davis, Olegs Lascenko and Juraj Huska all scored twice, while Pitchley also hit the net to become the 51st player in Raiders history to score 100 points for the club.

He added: “The first weekend back after the festive break is always tough but we had a gym session a few days prior to Cardiff so that kept the legs going. To get two points was key.

“And for me to get a goal was a good start to 2018 and also got me to 100 points, which is a great achievement on any team. Doing so for your home-town team is an even better feeling and thank you to fans and friends for all the messages. Now to dig deep and get the next 100 and so on!”

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